One Wirral’s Cancer Prehabilitation Service supports people diagnosed with cancer to get physically and mentally fit before surgery or treatment. Prehabilitation enables people with cancer to reduce their surgical stress response and optimise their physiological function to aid their recovery and improve their quality-of-life post treatment. The benefits can be seen in as little as two weeks.
The programme empowers people with cancer to enhance their own physical and mental health and wellbeing and thereby supports them to live life as fully as they can. If patients improve these aspects of their lives, they can respond better to treatment and it also can improve their quality of life afterwards, including by helping with lifestyle changes such as quitting smoking or increasing exercise.
This is a community led model working in collaboration with Wirral University Hospital Trust, community organisations, Wirral Library Services and Wirral Leisure Services. The service is delivered by Prehabilitation Practitioners who are all Level 4 cancer rehabilitation exercise instructors. The service is tailored and personalised to the individual based off their needs and interests; there are plenty of options for people to become active such as over 15 face to face exercises classes within community centres and live online classes.
- Prepare for tests, surgery, or treatment
- Promote healthy behaviours
- Maximise resilience to treatment
- Improve long-term health
- Tailored healthy living plans based on your lifestyle
How do we do it?
Once we understand an individual’s specific circumstances, our Prehabilitation Practitioners will work with individuals to provide a tailored lifestyle plan which includes prescribed tailored physical activity advice, healthy living plans and advice based on the health conditions, lifestyle, and individual needs. These activities can include:
- Prehabilitation exercise class
- Chair-based exercise
- Home-based workout
- Walking groups
- Gym and Swimming
- Many more activities
We have currently looked after 1,324 individuals living with cancer, with 98% of them having improved their physical health. These incredible results are why we also helped to set up a service for Diabetes Prehabilitation.
Without this service I wouldn’t have known where to turn for my physical rehabilitation after my operation. You have been instrumental in my recovery giving dietary and physical advice, your encouragement and friendly manner is one of the reasons I attend weekly.”
The service has given me the confidence to return to physical exercise in a structured and very pleasant atmosphere and continues to help with my recovery.
I would absolutely recommend this service. The practitioners/PTs at simply amazing, supporting everyone and tailoring the service to individual needs. Their emotional support is also very valuable to all. As a result, we now have our own patient support group and meet socially - it is transformative.
It’s the best thing I’ve ever done in my life. The exercises have really helped me. It’s helped my mental health, because when I first got diagnosed, I was very depressed. And meeting all the other patients with cancer, talking with them, has really helped me. Going for coffees after the classes, that’s helped me a lot, because all of patients talk about all different kinds of cancer. It’s great, fantastic. And tell them not to be apprehensive because I was when I first got there (I was apprehensive) and it changed my life